01438 741177         thewinesociety.com

Porto weekend away

We are off for four nights to Porto, any food and drink recommendations ?

Arriving Friday pm, so far we have planned a walking tour on Saturday morning

5 Likes

In brief…

Graham’s was the most rewarding lodge for us to visit, and I have seen many others say the same. It is a bit further out than most, but worth the walk.

Go to Majestic Cafe for a drink, and to admire the interior, but the food is expensive and not that great.

We liked the small restaurant Fish Fixe, by the river, on the Porto side of the Dom Luis Bridge. Nothing fancy, but good fish, a decent wine list, and a friendly waiter who enjoyed chatting about wine. That was in 2012, so YMMV.

I think they are the only useful comments I could make that go beyond anthing you could easily find online.

3 Likes

You may also find these older threads useful:

Have a good time, whatever you end up doing! :+1:

4 Likes

I went just before covid hit, really enjoyed it.

If you want to try a Francesinha then Café Santiago is the place.

I had really nice meals in ‘Tasca Vasco’, ‘Ostras & Coisas’ and ‘Cantina 32’, but the latter felt a bit rushed - it was right in the middle of the touristy area and I think they wanted high turnover of tables whilst the other 2 were more relaxed. I had reservations for them all and they were needed, not sure how it is now. These are all more casual, if you want fine dining the restaurants at the port houses are worth looking at but I didn’t go to any so cant recommend.

For port houses I visited Grahams (booked in advance), Cockburns (booked in advance) and Ramos Pinto (unbooked, had to book for later that day). They’re all a bit samey after a while, but Cockburns was the most enjoyable as it was just a few of us and our guide was lovely. I recommend paying a bit more for a more interesting tasting than the basic ones.

For drink there’s lots of bars along the river in Vila Nova de Gaia (where the port houses are), touristy again but sitting by the river in the sun with a Porto Tonic is great. I bought a bottle from Vinoteca as it had some interesting Niepoort wines, worth a look if you want to bring something back.

I stayed in Hotel Boa Vista and that whole area was really nice, I had some great lunches in tiny places along the seafront and slightly back from it and if id stayed longer (I think I also did 4 nights) would have eaten dinner in the area as they looked great.

2 Likes

Yes I agree. And a lovely terrace to eat on. A bottle of their very well prices 5 Grapes wouldn’t go amiss in your luggage.

It took us a while to understand what the young lady giving the tour was saying when she kept mentioning Grams. Or should that be written Gra’ms.

3 Likes

I suspect it is the American pronunciation of the name, as I’ve heard Americans use it even before I visited. .

I just got back from Porto a couple of weeks ago. Sadly, the wine bar Portologia (highly rated on various websites) was closed for the few days I was there, and looks like it still is.

For restaurants, a few doors away from Portologia is Almada 331. I ate here twice it was so good. Limited wine but food, service and welcome all first class. It’s small so booking probably recommended.

I tried a few other wine bars - my favourite was Capela Incomum. A great selection by the glass.

2 Likes

On the subject of restaurants, the top end prize goes to the (two Michelin starred) restaurant in the Yeatman hotel in Gaia. Sensational, but €€€ obvs.

If you have 4 nights out there, I really do recommend the trip on the train up to Pinhao, for all the right scenic reasons plus a meal up the other end. This is covered in one of the other threads somebody has kindly posted the link to. I forgot at the time to mention that the Vintage House in Pinhao also has a decent restaurant.

1 Like

And also a fantastic view over the river from an elevated position. I heartily recommend the train journey as the line runs alongside the river for much of the journey unlike the road.

1 Like

For me :-visit the train station and marvel at the ceiling; visit Taylor’s, drink and wander along the river in Via Nova de Gaia and boat trip up the Douro. Jealous. Enjoy

1 Like

Thank you all for the replies, some great suggestions, need more than three nights!

Has anyone been to the World of WIne, if so is it worth doing and if yes which exhibitions?

Yes, it was just (re-)opening when we went. There is quite a lot to look around without paying, so try that first. Personally, I chose the chocolate/cacao exhibition (finishes in a production unit!) and the art exhibition which was on Francis Bacon. I skipped the winemaking ones as I thought I have absorbed enough over the years. Mrs. B visited the fashion one.

I would say it was definitely worth it, though we were not staying far away. There are also several restaurant operations there. We only ate at one of them the once, so hard to generalise, but the cooking was competent and reasonable value.

1 Like

It was a few years ago but I loved Instituto do Vinho do Porto. The most amazing selection of Port by the glass I’ve ever seen, particularly aged tawnies. Beautiful old lodge in a tranquil garden overlooking the river on the Porto side - very central. Hope it’s still there. There is one in Lisbon too.

Me too. Wonderful place.

Hi, did you try the World of Wine.
Cheers
George

Hi George

Nope didn’t try World of Wine. I wish I had though now that I’ve seen it online :stuck_out_tongue_winking_eye:

Phil